Immunotherapy Shows Survival Benefit in Cervical Cancer After Chemoradiotherapy

Immunotherapy used after chemoradiotherapy shows better survival outcomes for patients with cervical cancer.

Using immunotherapy after chemoradiotherapy is safe and effective for patients with cervical cancer, according to study findings published in JAMA Oncology.

For most women with lymph node-positive cervical cancer, the dis- ease recurs despite chemoradiotherapy, according to the researchers, who said they wanted to examine immunotherapy in the upfront treatment setting.

From December 2012 to August 2016, 34 women with stage 1b2 to 4a cervical cancer with positive pelvic lymph nodes, para-aortic lymph nodes or both were enrolled in the clinical trial. Patients were a median age of 50 and most (69%) were white.

Thirteen patients were excluded from analysis because they didn’t receive Yervoy (ipilimumab), a type of immunotherapy. However, 21 women went on to get the medication via IV infusion every 21 days for four doses following chemoradiotherapy.

Researchers saw a survival benefit in the women who received Yervoy. The 12-month overall survival rate was 90%, and 81% of women lived without their disease worsening. Just two patients had grade 3 side effects, dermatitis and an increase in lipase (a protein made by the pancreas).